Here is a quick clip: clutch inspection on the 2006 KTM 450xc
The miles continue to add up on my dual sport bike. But as always it runs like a champ. I keep thinking maybe I should sell it and try to pick up a lower mileage model, but I will probably just ride this one until it dies and I have to part it out. I don’t know why, but I swear it is as strong, if not more so, that my 2007 bike that has far fewer miles on it. We just finished up a 750 mile Baja trip and now I am thinking about maintenence issues. This Baja ride had plenty of highway miles, so I set the 450 up with 15/48 gearing. This is pretty tall for technical riding and there were some locations that I had to use the clutch more than normal. Once home, I figured it was time for a clutch inspection.
I must say, that as the miles rack up, I can really see how the 450 is much easier on parts than my previous 525 was. I love the 525 motor, but the extra torque is hard on everything; chain, sprockets, clutches. One of the other guys I ride with just had to replace the countershaft on his 525 due to wear. That is a major job because the cases have to be split. Also, I can really see the difference in heat generated. The 450 almost never boils, but the 525 will fairly easy.
In relation to this video clip, I have to say that I do not use the clutch very much. Ten years ago when I was getting ready for my first ISDE I was fortunate enough to spend a bunch of time riding with Jimmy Lewis and that was one of his big lessons. Quit using the clutch, you don’t need it and it just leads to problems, particularly overheating. In the 2002 Czech Six Days, the conditions were horrible. It rained every day. Only half of all the riders finished the event. Of those that went out, I would say that the majority were from either clutch or overheating issues. The 2003 400exc KTM that I rode in the event was the perfect tool for the job, easy to ride and perfect power for slick conditions. That bike still sits in my garage, sort of like an old horse put out to pasture.